By Maureen Ojinaka
Enugu – The Police Command in Enugu State has arrested a three-man Automated Teller Machine (ATM) fraud syndicate operating within Enugu city.
In a statement on Friday in Enugu, the command’s spokesman, SP Ebere Amaraizu, said the police operatives recovered 30 ATM cards belonging to different individuals from the syndicate.
Amaraizu said the syndicate was smashed by the command’s Anti Cultism Squad who acted on a well-coordinated intelligence information.
He said the syndicate specialised in swindling their victims of hard-earned money from their bank accounts through their ATM cards transactions.
According to him, they do this smartly under the pretext of offering assistance to customers, but exchange their non-workable ATM cards to the genuine customers’ own.
“They will pick the real ATM cards and also spy on the pin code of the genuine customers’ cards.
“They use this trick to wreck havoc on the affected victims and hereby withdrawing all the customers’ deposit in a matter of some hours,’’ he said.
He gave the suspects’ names as Chinweuba Ogodo, a tricycle operator in the city, and from Ezza in Ebonyi; Okechukwu Nwoke, a bus driver from Ahiazu Mbaise,Imo; and Sopuruchi Emmanuel from Alayi Bende, Abia; all resident in Enugu.
Amaraizu said that Ogodo regretted his involvement in the crime and blamed it on lack of knowledge.
He said Ogodo confessed that as a commercial tricycle rider, he was always contracted by Nwoke and Emmanuel to convey them to banks with crowded ATM customers where they hanged around to discover their preys.
He said that a full scale investigation into the incident had begun.
The police spokesman advised members of the public to be vigilant, security conscious and wary of those that would try to offer them help at any ATM machine.